Cholesterol

whit ramirez

Introduction

You can better understand Blood Pressure if you know about cholesterol. Cholesterol is a waxy fat-like substance that is found in the cells of the body. Cholesterol is not bad unless you have too much. You need the right amount of Cholesterol to make hormones, vitamin D, and substances that help you digest your food. Although our bodies make all the cholesterol we need, we intake cholesterol in the food we eat. Cholesterol travels in small packages called lipoproteins through your bloodstream. There are two types of lipoproteins, low-density (LDL) and high-density (HDL). Having a healthy amount of both is very important. LDL is known as "bad" Cholesterol, for if you have a high LDL it will buildup Cholesterol in your arteries. HDL is often referred to as the "good" cholesterol, for it carries Cholesterol from other parts of your body to your liver which is the organ that removes cholesterol in the body. The packages are made of fat on the inside and proteins on the outside.

Structure and Function of Lipoproteins

Lipoproteins are classified based in three ways. One of them is density. They are separated by Ultracentrifugation. There are five major groups of lipoproteins that have been identified that are important physiologically and in clinical diagnosis. Low-density lipoproteins density lies between 1.019-1.063 and average diameter ranges from 18-28 nm. High-density lipoproteins density ranges between 1.063-1.121 and the average diameter varies between 5-15 nm. Lipoproteins with high lipid content will have low density, larger size and float on centrifugation. Lipoproteins with high protein content sediment easily, have compact size and have a higher density. They are also classified based on electrophoretic mobility, which is mainly dependent upon protein content. The more protein content a lipoprotein has the faster it will move, and those with minimum content will have minimum mobility. Approximately 50% of the weight of LDL is cholesterol and only 25% is protein. HDL particles consist of 20% cholesterol and 50% protein. Since protein is more dense than fat, HDL particles are more dense than LDL particles, which explains the names "high-density" and "low-density" lipoproteins. The other major structural difference between LDL and HDL relates to the types of protein they contain. LDL contain proteins called B-100 proteins, while HDL particles contain mostly A-I and A-II proteins.The function of LDL is to deliver cholesterol to cells, where it is used in membranes, or for the synthesis of steroid hormones. Cells take up cholesterol by receptor-mediated endocytosis. One of the important functions of HDL is to transport cholesterol from the cells and tissue back to the liver. High HDL-cholesterol is good as it takes cholesterol out of cells and the blood and helps to prevent excess cholesterol. HDL also removes cholesterol deposited in the walls of blood vessels.

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How are the concentrations monitored and how are they associated with the risk for heart disease and associated disorders?

During a blood test the levels are monitored because they are used to help decrease the patient's risk of heart disease. HDL levels should be at least 40mg/dL or closer to 60mg/dL. LDL should be lower than 129mg/dL or even lower for people that are at higher risks for heart disease. LDL is the main source of artery-clogging plaque. Thehardening of the arteries and can lead to heart diseases like a heart attack or stroke. Lipoprotein HDL helps clear the cholesterol throughout the blood.
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Other monitored molecules

Triglycerides are also monitored in your blood. Any calories that aren't used turn into these molecules, and having too many can lead to an increased risk of heart disease. Blood sugar levels are also monitored for a few different reasons. One, they can lead to type two diabetes, hypoglycemia, or hyperglycemia. Furthermore, uncontrolled blood sugar levels can also damage blood vessels that supply blood to important organs such as the heart, kidneys, eyes, and nerves. Lastly and clearly, total cholesterol is important to be monitored as well.

Meaning of Cholesterol test results

Your total cholesterol level is important because if these are high, most likely your LDL or HDL levels will be high as well. If your LDL levels are high you can infer that you are at a higher risk of heart disease and clogged arteries. Typically, It is better for your HDL to be higher, although the emphasis has shifted to target zones to attempt to keep people as healthy as possible. Patients analyze this value by viewing charts and talking to their doctors. Precautions are taken due to too low or too high levels.

How to change cholesterol levels in blood

A healthy diet with limited and minimum fat and cholesterol will increase HDL levels and decrease LDL levels. You should only intake 7% or less of total calories of Saturated fat, cholesterol should be 200mg per day or less. Furthermore, Omega 3 fatty acids will increase HDL levels.Another way to increase these levels is consistent physical activity with at least 30 minutes a day for 5 days a week. An estimated every six pounds that are lost can increase HDL by one and lower LDL by one. If none of these natural treatments work, medication can be helpful as well.